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24/08/2018 南京夜网

Yes vote fits the bill for council at next election

ORANGE City Council spokesman Allan Reeder has urged electors to vote yes in a referendum to recognise local government in the Australian constitution.
Nanjing Night Net

The government announced the referendum to be held alongside September’s federal election yesterday after years of lobbying from local government groups.

Mr Reeder said the exclusion from the constitution was an oversight that needed to be fixed to secure the future of the federal government handing money directly to local councils.

“The local government sector has become a vital part of the way Australia is managed,” he said.

“It’s a loophole exposed by a court case that raised questions as to whether the federal government can directly fund local government activities.”

In recent years Orange has benefited from millions in federal government money paid directly to council including $10 million for the north Orange bypass, $3.6 million for the indoor aquatic centre, $1.6 million for the PCYC at Anzac Park and 1.3 million for cancer care at Western Care Lodge.

The federal government has also committed $4.9 million towards the airport upgrades and $20 million to the Macquarie pipeline if it is approved.

Mr Reeder said the direct funding of local government had the benefit of cutting out extra costs when money was passed on second hand.

The push to write local government into the constitution came after a successful high court challenge to the national school chaplaincy program, which set a legal precedent leaving the federal funding of local government exposed.

Mr Reeder said the local government sector would begin a public awareness campaign ahead of September’s election.

“Unless there’s bipartisan support the referendum has a snowball’s chance in hell,” he said.

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ORANGE City Council spokesman Allan Reeder has urged electors to vote yes in a referendum to recognise local government in the Australian constitution.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.